Engineered Hardwood vs. Laminate: Which One & How to Choose?
Amongst several wood flooring options available, engineered and laminate are the most popular ones. The reason is they are versatile, long-lasting and economical also. These floor options look similar and sometimes even used interchangeably by masses but there are significant differences between them. So, if you have decided to remodel your house or office either with engineered wood or with laminate floors, this guide will help you in making the right decision by providing key pieces of information.
Unlike solid hardwood, it contains multiple layers of both real hardwood and plywood. The top layer comprises real one whereas the bottom and middle layer encompass plywood. The main advantages with this floor are as follows:
1. Flooring installation with this choice of wood is never an issue. The reason is it is easy to install with a tongue and groove installation system which any person can do by watching DIY videos.
2. It is an eco-friendly choice that uses up to 70% repurposed wood waste.
3. It scores high on the durability factor with a lifespan of over 20 years.
4. One can choose the size as per their preferences as the boards are available in both narrow and wide width sizes.
It is a hybrid kind of flooring material comprising four layers: wear layer, decorative layer, core board, and backing layer. Amongst all four layers, the backing layer is the backbone of this flooring as it provides stability and prevents penetration of water from underneath. The advantages with this floor are:
1. It is a durable flooring option and is ideal to consider for high-traffic areas like homes with pets or kids, commercial complexes, etc.
2. It is a cost-effective alternative that gives a natural wood look.
3. It is scratch-resistance and limited water-resistance capabilities.
4. Unlike other flooring, simple mopping or sweeping up is enough to clean and maintain the look and shine of these floors.
5. Laminate hardwood flooring installation is not an uphill task for professionals as it supports the floating method via an interlocking design.
6. Last but not least, it is an economical choice with easy to install and easy maintain feature.
Now, the basics are clear, let’s try to shortlist these floor options on various grounds. Cost, appearance, durability, etc., are some of the factors important to consider while choosing the ideal flooring option. So, let’s weigh these choices on the aforementioned parameters as well:
Appearance: If you go by look, engineered wood is the clear-cut winner as it resembles with natural wood and imparts natural beauty to any space. However, if you ask any interior designer, he will never recommend choosing any floor solely on appearance factor as looks never tell the complete story.
Resale Value: Fortunately, in this category as well, the winner is the same. The engineered wood increases the value of a home over time. Though laminate floors also increase the property price over time, the variation in price is not much on the higher side.
Durability: Laminate is sturdy and scratch-resistance. On the other hand, its counterpart is more vulnerable to wear and tear as it encompasses real wood veneer. So, if you are choosing the floor for high-traffic areas, the former is the best choice.
Moisture- Resistance: This is one parameter where both floor choices score equal marks. The reason is both floors have water-repellent materials like adhesive and wax that provide adequate protection against water but are not completely water-proof.
Maintenance: Engineered hardwood is easy to clean but not to maintain as it contains grains and holes that collect dirt over time. With other flooring, cleaning and maintenance is a hassle-free task.
Installation: If you do not want to spend money on installation, then you should go ahead with laminate as it does not require gluing or nailing, which is mandatory when it comes to the installation of hardwood floors.
Pricing: Last but not the least, pricing plays an important role in making or breaking any choice. If you are looking for a wood-like alternative floor option falling in the cost-effective category, then laminate tops the chart.
Which to Choose?
The choice is yours as both the flooring options make excellent choices. Both are durable, look extremely beautiful and affordable to a certain extent as well. Still, if you have to choose any one option amongst these two, consider the most important parameter and take your decision accordingly. Else you can take professional guidance from a reputed company First Class Flooring. It will help you in making an informed decision and even offer different kinds of flooring materials at the most competent rates. So, think wisely!